Unique Streets Walked: 23
Miles Walked: 3.3
Street Names: Agate, Billiard, East End, Flotilla, Forbes, Forbes Ave Ext., Gamma, Guthrie, Hearst, Henrietta, Laclair, Lancaster, Milton, Overton, Pansy, Peebles, Rear, Richmond, Sanders, S. Braddock, Thays, Trevanion, W. Hutchinson
Regent Square is a neighborhood in the East End of Pittsburgh. I parked near a coffee shop named Biddle’s Escape.
And immediately noticed that the street signs were green, not blue like they are in Pittsburgh. I flagged down a man on the street and asked him if he lived here. He said no, but he works for Wilkinsburg. I asked him “where’s Pittsburgh? I mean, I know it’s around here somewhere, but I don’t see the blue signs marking the streets.” I felt better when he didn’t know either. We ended up deciding that if I walked west a few blocks, I would definitely be in Pittsburgh because S. Braddock Ave was. He asked me what I was doing and he asked me “why?!” “To get to exercise and to see some pretty cool things.” He agreed and I went on my way.
I walked west and eventually looked to the north and saw a blue street sign. It was Peebles Street! Peebles intersected with Forbes which is one of the main thoroughfares running through Pittsburgh. At this point it seemed like your standard residential street. Not the 4-lane behemoth it is in Oakland and downtown. I walked through some alleys and more residential streets and then got onto S. Braddock Ave. This street is the main commercial street that runs through the area. There are many bars, restaurants, and shops along it. Frick Park has an entrance and a small parking lot on it too. Frick Park is a 644-acre green respite from the grey of Pittsburgh streets. It was established in 1919 upon the death of Henry Clay Frick. His estate deeded his 151-acre property to the city and his mansion is now part of the Frick Art and Historical Center campus.
I walked the outskirts of Frick for the first half of my walk. The streets went West in tiers, following the lines of the park. There were many short streets, made shorter so by the fact that Regent Square is also bordered by Wilkinsburg, Edgewood, and Swissvale. Many times, I found myself on a Pittsburgh street intersecting with a Swissvale street. Or a block would start out one side in Pittsburgh and end in Wilkinsburg. Later I saw on the map that the border between Pittsburgh and its neighbors is a diagonal line.
Signs, Subarus, and Solar Panels. The houses in this area are, for the most part, very well-kept and of a decent size. The ones that border the park are usually stunning and boast great outdoor spaces overlooking the forest. I saw quite a few houses with Solar Panels and on almost every block, there was a Little Free Library. One was even in the style of a slant-roof modern house. The Welcome Neighbor signs were too many to count and were only slightly more in number than the Stronger Than Hate signs. Many yards had both signs. One Subaru (of many) had wobbly Jesus and Buddha figurines sharing the dash. The general vibe from this neighborhood was inclusivity, unless you let your dog poop on their grass and don’t clean it up.
I saw many cats in windows and even one kitty-loaf glaring at me, feetless, from a front porch. Houses with south-facing windows grew wild jungles and my thumb and face turned green with envy. Grey squirrels chased black ones and then they switched roles and resumed the race. A female cardinal flitted through the dogwood branches with her crimson companion. The sun was out and so were some of the vernal creatures and smells. Mud, moss, grass. I shudder to think about what they will be doing in 48 hours when the high is forecast to be 9 degrees.